Socialist Worker

Articles of Hope, Adornments for Justice

Issue No. 2164

This innovative exhibition shows eleven pieces of art jewellery created by members of the Manchester Jewellery Workshop. Each item is inspired by an article from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The medium of the work is striking. As the exhibition’s concept author points out, “Jewellery, now so often the domain of frivolous decoration through mass production, seldom is imbibed with such meaning or significance.”

By contrast each artwork here “seeks to provoke, challenge and educate the viewer”.

Samantha Mills’ medal/brooch, Working Class Hero, is a comment on industrial diseases.

It combines cogs and pins set with fibres that represent the damage caused by diseases such as asbestosis.

Ewa Barker’s neckpiece in silver and copper is inspired by the struggle for the right to food. Its main panel depicts a Haitian woman forced to sell mud patties as “food”.

Anne Hawley’s Apothecary Ring involves a balance with sliding figures representing the tension between the pharmaceutical industry and access to medicines.

Other artists take up international or domestic issues including women’s right to vote, slavery and freedom for Tibet.

Articles of Hope, Adornments for Justice

Royal Exchange Mezzanine Gallery, Manchester

Until 21 August then venues across Britain

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Article information

Tue 11 Aug 2009, 18:46 BST
Issue No. 2164
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